I love this stuff. I feel like I can eat it endlessly. For those of you not in the loop, this is South Pacific Ceviche. Oka in Samoa, Ika Mata in Cook Islands, Kokoda in Fiji, Ota Ika in Tonga... I've probably missed out some Pacific variant. But there is a reason this is so diverse. A great entree, a tasty side dish to palusami, chop suey, roast pork, taro. It goes with everything. I've had debates over what actually belongs in this dish, so here's what I find gives the best balance.
Big mixing bowl - non-reactive - you're cooking with acid!
2 Chopping boards
Paper towels or clean tea-towel
- 3 Fillets of firm fish: My fish of choice is Trevally.
- 2 Cans of Coconut Milk
- 1/2 Lebanese Cucumber
- 1/2 Red Onion
- 1 Red Capsicum
- 1/4 Cup Lemon Juice
- 4 Tbsp of Lime Juice
- Chilli (optional)
Wash your fish fillets and then trim them of the thin stringy bits around the outside. Dice the fish into chunks - I go for about 1.5cm square - too small and you'll lose the fish in the sauce. Move to a non-reactive bowl.
Finely mince the red onion and mix it through with the fish. Finely dice your capsicum and half the Lebanese cucumber, and set them aside for later.
Pour the lemon and lime juice in with the fish.
The Acid from the juice will be cooking the fish, so mix thoroughly. Cover with cling film and leave in the fridge to "cook". After an hour or so, the fish will have turned white.
Shake a can of coconut milk to make sure it's properly mixed and pour into the fish mixture. Taste the sauce - if it's too acidic, crack open the other can of milk and add until the creaminess of the coconut milk takes the edge off the lemon and lime.
Mix in your capsicum and cucumber, salt and pepper to taste.
Serve with some chopped some chilli if you like a bit of punch.